Here’s a very interesting article by Billy Bragg in the New York Times.
He basically argues that the recent sale of social network site bebo.com (for $600 million) is due, in part, to the music that artists contributed…. and to be fair, the sale should have paid royaties to the contributors.
The musicians who posted their work on Bebo.com are no different from investors in a start-up enterprise. Their investment is the content provided for free while the site has no liquid assets. Now that the business has reaped huge benefits, surely they deserve a dividend.
Techcrunch strongly disagrees with Billy Braggs suggestion.
If Ambisonia ever gets to a position of financial ease … a large part of that would be due to the content that people have submitted. So I think there is truth in the suggestion that sites owe contributors royalties. But I think the exact conditions should be stated up front.